# Tuesday, March 26, 2013

I’ve been doing a lot of reading in 2 Clement, and have begun to work through the explicit quotations in 2 Clem (that is, those introduced with quotation formula, plus the obvious quotation in §2.1).

This is in preparation for the paper I submitted for consideration to ETS. Whether they take it or not, I plan on writing the paper. Maybe I’ll submit it for publication somewhere.

Anyway, the research is on discourse cues and authoritative sayings in 2 Clement.

I thought I’d post some of the background stuff I’m doing. I think when I write, and I need to examine all of these quotations, so I’m simply working through them. The below is rough, wrong in places, misleading in others, I’m sure. But, here it is, in case someone is interested.

I will say — it is interesting to see how the author’s argument is built and developed with each quotation, like stepping-stones along a path. It will be interesting to see how long that trend continues as I work through the balance of the quotations in the document.


2Cl 3.2

2 And he himself also says, “The one who confesses me before people, I will confess him before my Father.”

The first verse of this section is an application from the previous quotations, beginning with ουν (“Therefore”). Affirming the great mercy that has been shown through Christ’s saving of sinners, the author moves from discussing what Christ has done to discussing the response to Christ’s saving action. His statement is that those who know God must confess him and not deny him.

After the statement of the necessity of confession, the next clause begins with δε, a conjunction that functions at the discourse level to note a new development along the same theme. Here, the author uses a quotation from “he himself” (Christ) to buttress the assertion that confession of Christ is the necessary response to his saving action.

After this quotation, the author affirms his conclusion again, noting the reward of confessing Christ who saves.

2Cl 3.5

And he also says in Isaiah, “This people honors me with their lips, but their heart is far away from me.”

§3.4 indicates a new development along the same theme by using δε. The author has introduced the necessity of confessing and now must instruct the hearer in how to confess. One confesses, says the author, by doing what Christ says, and also by not disobeying. These are two sides to the same coin, the result emphasized by repetition in the negative. This is extended and emphasized further by possible allusion to Mk 12.30, which is itself based on De 6.4–5, the shema.

The necessity of this method of confession is then supported further, again with δε denoting development of the theme and then appeal to an authority. Here “he” is ambiguous; in context in Isaiah the “he” is God, yet here it could easily be Christ. This quotation, given the larger context of the discourse, supports and extends the current point in the author’s argument: Confession must be with both mouth and heart in order to be genuine.

2Cl 4.2

2 For he says, “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord!’ will be saved, but the one who practices righteousness.”

§4 begins immediately after the quotation in §3.5 with an οὖν. Runge argues that οὖν is a marker of continuity and development. That is, like δε it marks development along the mainline, but whereas δε largely denotes new development, ουν implies a tighter continuity. Runge explains:

In the NT Epistles, [οὖν] is regularly translated as “therefore” to indicate that what follows the particle is either inferentially drawn or concluded from what precedes, hence + continuity. One often finds οὖν at high-level boundaries in the discourse, where the next major topic is drawn from and builds upon what precedes. In this way, it signals + development.

In 2Cl 4.1, the author uses οὖν as Runge describes, to move to a new major topic that is built upon the previous topic, that true confession is done with both mouth and heart. From here, he uses a γαρ to introduce a quotation that is somewhat like material found in Mt 7.21||Lk 6.46, but different enough that many consider it to be from an apocryphal source. This indicates support of what precedes, thus the author now supports his view of true confession with this quotation. The structure of the quotation itself, using αλλα, places the focus upon “the one who practices righteousness” as the one who will be saved.

This is immediately followed by a combination of conjunctions, ὥστε οὖν. As before, οὖν marks development and continuity along the theme line; so here the author continues to develop his point. The conjunction ὥστε is inferential, occurring with a subjunctive, indicating something similar to a command. This is the application necessary to meet the author’s stipulation of proper confession, to “confess him with our deeds by loving one another.” This is then negatively restated through a prepositional phrase adverbially modifying “let us confess.” The same point is then again positively stated, via αλλα, functioning to highlight the proscription to be self-controlled, merciful, and good. This is expanded (via και, which functions additively) to include suffering together and also not loving money. These deeds/works are the basis of confession of Jesus, and those who do opposite, despite whatever their mouths may confess, do not confess him.<?p>

2Cl 4.5

5 Because of this, you who do these things, the Lord said, “If you have gathered with me in my bosom and you do not do my commandments, I will throw you out and I will say to you, ‘Leave me! I do not know where you are from, you doers of iniquity!’”

The author shifts into another quotation, this time using sentence-commencing δια τουτο, “because of this.” Runge notes it functions similarly to ουν, with +continuity and +development, but has an even narrower semantic constraint. It refers back to the previous conclusion, that confession is verified by action and not simply words, but refers it to those “who do these things,” things that are warned against in §4.3. And again, it continues development of the main line as the author continues to explore and exhort the crowd about the necessity of good works as basis of one’s confession of Christ. The material quoted has similarities with Mt 7.23; 25.12; Lk 13.27 and Ps 6.8, though some consider the material to come from the Gospel of the Nazareans. Here, the author uses it to (again) seal his point. He is directly addressing those who do not confess Christ with their actions by warning them that “the Lord” (which in Second Clement could be either Jesus or God, though the author typically sees no distinction between the two) will throw them out, even if they have “gathered with [him] in [his] bosom,” if they do not do his commandments. The ones who confess with lips but not with actions are equated with “doers of iniquity” and duly separated from the Lord.

This is harsh. Rather than use his own words and authority, the author uses a saying from an authoritative figure to effectively judge his listeners.

Post Author: rico
Tuesday, March 26, 2013 9:01:27 PM (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00) 

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